People in East Haven have been reflecting on the life of Eric Duncan who died a few days ago after a long illness. The Duncans were fishermen in East Haven and this photograph (circa 1932) shows Eric sitting with his grandfather, John Duncan, who lived in the original cottage at No.1 Shore Row. Over his lifetime, Eric lived in several properties in East Haven including No.10 Long Row. He was a time served joiner and also built No.7 Tankerville where he lived for a while before eventually moving back to No.1 Shore Row where he could be close to his boats. The white clinker built boat currently sited on the croft was also built by Eric. He held the Tay Fisheries Salmon Licence in the mid 1980s which meant he had the sole fishing rights between Carnoustie and Elliot. Despite being pre-deceased by his beloved wife Cathy and two sons Alan and Steve, Eric remained heavily involved in everything that was happening in the community. In the 1990s he built a bridge to enable people to cross the ‘Coos burn’ when walking north along the beach. Following it’s accidental removal in 2012 during the construction of the coastal path, a new bridge was built by residents to replace the much loved landmark. It was named after Eric who declared it officially open during a ceremony in October 2013. Eric was able to participate in many of the East Haven 800 celebrations and was a well-kent face in and around the village. We are sad it his loss but are very grateful for his many contributions to East Haven.
A few weeks ago we became aware that a large part of the dunes near the winches is eroding due to an increase in visitor numbers. Due to the severity of the problem we asked Angus Council Coastal Management team for an urgent on-site meeting to explore what action should be taken to prevent the problem getting any worse and to help the dune system recover. As a result, we have agreed a number of immediate and longer term actions to help recovery and prevent further damage in the future. Firstly, we have fenced off the area of greatest concern and started to plant coastal grasses. Luckily, Stan Beattie had grown hundreds of Marram and Lyme grasses from seed earlier this year. Marram and Lyme grasses are the best coastal defence as they provide a strong structure to bind the dunes. We have already planted around 300 grasses but intend planting a further 800 across two key areas of dune this autumn. Further plans and protection work will be cariied out over the next year as we raise funds to assist us in this important area of dune conservation.
On Sunday 16th September 17 volunteers attended the Great British Beach Clean in East Haven. It was only a week since the same 1km stretch had been cleaned when littoral artist, Julia Barton visited. Despite this, a further 16 bags of marine litter was removed which is jaw dropping and of enormous concern. All items were painstakingly recorded and uploaded to the Marine Conservation Society to inform research and knowledge about what is happening on our Scottish coasts. As you can see from the chart opposite, 86.5% of the material comprised plastic or polystyrene. Residents in East Haven are trying to eliminate the use of single use plastic items in an attempt to raise awareness of the environmental damage this waste is inflicting on our seas and wildlife. Many thanks to all those who volunteered and gave their precious time to this great effort.
It is no surprise that East Haven was the first customer of 'Sea no Waste' in Arbroath this morning. We have waited so long for this shop to open which sells all things plastic free. No longer do we have to search for these items online as Sea No Waste have a wide selection of plastic free items, dried foods and fruit and veg. I was really surprised to see that they are also selling beautiful handcrafted soap made in Arbroath itself. Everything is of a really high quality and often made in the UK so we highly recommend a visit to Sea No Waste.
Artist Julia Barton visited East Haven today as part of an awareness raising intiative during Angus Coastal Festival. Julia has been working on a science-art project called Littoral Art. The idea developed a couple of years ago when she became aware of the extent of plastics which have infiltrated the marine system. It was a great learning experience for residents and visitors alike as Julia helped us to identify minute particles of plastic embedded in every part of our sand, dune and seaweed system. It was really shocking to see the amount of plastic that can be extracted from even a small area 1m square. Some of it is identifiable such as nylon fishing line (monofilament) and plastic cotton buds. Other items are much more difficult to spot such as nurdles which are tiny pellets of plastic. Billions are used every year to make nearly all our plastic products but many end up on beaches such as ours in East Haven. Julia also introduced us to plasticglomerates which are stones containing melted plastic. We were very shocked to find them on our beach and understand that they may have been created by people burning plastic bottles during BBQs. Why not take a look at Julia's web-site or Facebook page and find out more about how she will develop the project in 2019.